Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Simplicity 3835 Built by Wendy Finished


I made this dress in a Kaffe Fassett cotton, Clouds, in Charcoal colourway. Kaffe Fassett cotton is crisp and has a lot of body. It's so different to the Liberty Tana Lawn, which has a much higher thread count and is almost like silk. The Kaffe Fasset doesn't have the "rustling" quality that Tana Lawn has, but I like it. It seems it will be strong and can be treated quite robustly.

This was an easy dress to make, except for the gathers around the neck band, which drove me round the twist as no matter how I tried, I just couldn't seem to get them completely even. I used masses of pins at right angles to the seamline, and really tried hard. Mind you, Miranda was on the TV, so I was fighting a bit of a battle there. Miranda is the funniest thing on TV and cannot be competed with. Not that I see much TV. Mary Portas, Dragons Den and Miranda (and Top Gear, if I'm telling the truth) are the only things I watch, unless there happens to be a good pop-science prog on (I have a weakness for anything that merely whispers "quantum theory" or "nature of reality" or "uncertainty principle" or "Schrodinger's Cat". I could go on). Oooh, but I did manage to see Tom Ford's A Single Man recently, having had the DVD for ages. Beautiful...absorbing.

But I've gone off-topic.

So, the gathers around the neckline aren't as absolutely mathematically even as I would like (but I am a person who has to have all my shopping up the right way, even in the trolley, on the conveyor belt, in the shopping bags, etc) and the gathers will probably irritate me for ever, but I do like this dress.

The sleeves would have been a tad tight where the tie attaches to the cuff but, as others had mentioned it, I was prepared and took a little off the seam allowance.

Others have also said this dress comes up very short. Being a mere 5ft 2 I thought it wouldn't be an issue for me. I was wrong. I could not wear this dress if there was a slim chance of raising my arms above shoulder level. Knickers would be on show. Very undignified.

If I made this dress again, I would probably spend a whole day trying to get the gathers even. And I would make it a couple of inches longer, just for the sake of common decency.


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Vogue 9771 Disappointment


I made this top in a polyester (I think) jersey, a very slinky, drapy fabric. The top was so easy to make, I couldn't believe it (if you allow for the horridness of sewing any stretch fabric - yuk). There is a self-facing in the front of the neck and separate facings in the armscyes and the back of the neck (no fastenings of any kind - you just slip it on over your head). Anyway, within a few hours it was finished and I couldn't wait to wear it. But, oh dear. When I looked in the mirror I noticed straight away that one armhole was bigger than the other, though it didn't seem to be something anyone else would notice when the top is worn. It still bugged me like crazy. I laid the top on the floor, to inspect it, and horrors! it was totally and utterly lopsided. I don't understand why. Fair enough, the pattern is cut on the bias, and the whole thing has stretched diagonally somehow. So it's something to do with the bias but I don't know if the fabric wasn't "square" when I cut it, or whether it has just stretched out of shape in one direction. I'm confused, because the facing for the larger armhole still fitted, tabs and everything, when I sewed it in. Or could it be because the pattern didn't say to use a stretch fabric. I don't see why it would matter...


I was so excited about this top, as I really like the fabric a lot, and the shape of the garment, too. I'm so disappointed. I'm developing a small phobia of stretch fabrics! It's a real shame because half the patterns I choose call for stretch fabrics.

I would make this again, but in a NO stretch fabric.

By the way, I am having real trouble getting my photos the right size. Sometimes they come up HUGE and sometimes small. Bear with me!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

"Vivienne Westwood" Top Vogue 8385

A short post...

The other day a fellow blogger mentioned Vivienne Westwood and I happened to say I liked the Anglomania Sunday Dress. Literally five minutes later, and purely by chance (I was looking for something entirely different) I came across this pattern:


Yes yes, I know it's not the Sunday dress but just look at the loveliness of it.

And here is a BRILLIANT version:

This top (the Westwood one at the top of my page) is the Anglomania Atlantis Sunday top. And now that I've found a great pattern to recreate it (yes, okay, I bet I'm the last blogger to know about this pattern) I find it's blooming well out of print. Out. Of. Print.

What can I say? I'm still hyperventilating over it. I may have to order it from the States - I know I've seen it available somewhere.